Every year-end the “R” word starts to creep into people’s minds, it’s brought up during conversations and seen throughout posts online. I have never been a big fan of using the term ”Resolution” or making one. I prefer to set Goals which tend to be more specific, driven by action and actually attainable. Resolutions are usually more generalized, which require much larger actions that need to be sustained over longer periods of time. The scope of the resolution usually leads to poor results and a lower percentage of achievement.
Resolution by definition is:
- a resolve; a decision or determination: to make a firm resolution to do something
- the action of solving a problem, dispute, or contentious matter: the peaceful resolution of all disputes
Goal by definition is:
- the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result: going to law school has become the most important goal in his life
Depending on what life changes you plan on making this year, clearly defining them will help you decipher whether it is an attainable goal or more of a permanent resolution.
Do you want to lose 20 lbs. (goal) or do you want to exercise at least 3 times a week with a focus on creating a healthier lifestyle (resolution)? In terms of weight loss, having both goals and resolutions could prove to be very beneficial. Accomplishing smaller goals will help to keep you motivated for more long-term success of a lifestyle change.
Goals can also be divided into short or long-term. Another reason why I love goal setting is that goals do not have to end once they are achieved, you can always set another greater goal to challenge yourself. What we become while trying to achieve our goals and the lessons learned along the way is where the real beauty lies! It’s not just about attaining the goal, it’s about learning to fall and getting back up again; finding your true inner strength and realizing you are more capable of accomplishing anything you set your mind to. Those lessons are more valuable than any achievement.
To propel yourself into action, start by setting a long-term goal. For example: purchasing a home. This is considered a long-term goal because there are many short-term goals that need to be achieved in order to accomplish the end goal.
Once the goal is set, work your way backwards defining smaller goals like saving the down payment and the steps required to save the money. Goals require a plan. A well thought out plan will help motivate you into action and will ultimately help you to successfully reach your goals!
Resolutions tend to fade out fairly quickly after the New Year either from lack of commitment or due to trying to realize something that is too broad and unattainable. There is usually not a problem that needs to be resolved in your life but rather goals that you want to achieve. If you want to make some real changes this year, start with setting goals, not resolutions!